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Huffman, Grijalva, Castor Unveil Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act

Comprehensive Plan to Employ Oceans in Fight Against Climate Change

October 20, 2020

Washington, D.C. – Today, Representative Jared Huffman (D-CA), a Member of the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis and Chair of the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife, joined Natural Resources Committee Chair Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Select Committee on the Climate Crisis Chair Kathy Castor (D-FL), Chairwoman of the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), and Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), Deb Haaland (D-NM) and Joe Neguse (D-CO) to unveil the Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act. This comprehensive bill integrates evidence-based approaches to protect the ocean and coastal communities, promote sustainable job opportunities, and support clean offshore energy while reducing the devastating impacts of the climate crisis.

To view today’s press conference, click here.

“We are already living out the alarming impacts of climate change on land, including catastrophic wildfires and drought. But we should be just as concerned about ocean impacts: major declines in biodiversity, rapidly shifting fish stocks, sea level rise, and widespread losses of our world’s most important coastal habitats,” said Rep. Huffman. “On the North Coast of California in my district, and across the country, coastal communities are all too familiar with these consequences. We are facing a dire situation, but we have not lost hope. This legislation provides tangible solutions to tackle the most important crisis of our time and we are all committed to doing this together.”

The Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act lays out a roadmap for leveraging the oceans’ carbon sequestration and renewable energy potential while boosting the climate resiliency of marine and coastal ecosystems and coastal communities. Like the House Democrats’ Climate Crisis Action Plan, the new bill prioritizes just and equitable climate solutions for communities of color, low-income communities, Tribal and Indigenous communities, and the U.S. Territories and Freely Associated States. This bill was created in partnership with dozens of stakeholders and has incorporated more than 1,600 comments to produce the first-ever comprehensive legislation to advance ocean-based climate solutions. 

Key ocean solutions in the bill include:

  • Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Prohibiting Oil and Gas Leasing in the Outer Continental Shelf
  • Increase Carbon Storage in Blue Carbon Ecosystems
  • Promote Coastal Resiliency
  • Improve Ocean Protection
  • Support Climate-Ready Fisheries
  • Tackle Ocean Health Challenges
  • Restore U.S. Leadership in International Ocean Governance

Bill text of the Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act can be viewed athttps://bit.ly/37CBNKP, a section-by-section summary at https://bit.ly/2HreuYYand a fact sheet on the bill can be viewed at https://bit.ly/3m35EzP.

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